As Americans, we will always love a good underdog story. Such stories of perseverance and constantly battling adversity to reach their goal of making it to where they want to be. Accomplishing goals that they have been working on for years on end, waiting for their shot to prove themselves. Sylvester Stallone can attribute his career and life on touching the hearts of us all with such a story in Rocky Balboa.

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Last night, Walt Lemon Jr. became the latest story in this regard. For those of you who are not aware of his journey of getting to this point, here is a quick background.

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Lemon went to Julian High School located on the Southside of Chicago and was a star player for the Jaguars. His senior year Lemon averaged 19 points, six assists, five rebounds and three steals per game, earning him a third-team 3A all-state pick by the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association and a second-team All-Chicago Public League.

From there he took his talents down south with the Bradley Braves in Peoria, Illinois. When he graduated he ranked among Bradley’s all-time top 10 in career points (1721, 7th), assists (367, 10th) and steals (222, 3rd) and had several awards, including the MVC Men’s Basketball Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 2014, Bradley’s first player ever to win the award.

Unfortunately for Lemon, this was not enough for him to be drafted in the NBA. This is where he started his journey all around the world playing in a multitude of countries. It has taken him to Hungary, Germany, Turkey, Greece and to the G League.

This is the epitome of a true journeyman, we just witnessed this last year with Andre Ingram of the Lakers. He finally got his shot on the big stage at age 31 and took full advantage of it.

Last night, in Lemon’s 8th NBA game ever, and third with the Bulls, he answered the call and delivered on what may be the biggest stage in his career.

“Nobody really expected me to be here, and the fact that the Bulls gave me the opportunity to play, let alone giving me the chance to win an NBA game, is — I can’t ask for more, man.”

Lemon was the talk of the league last night and caught the attention of every major media outlet. The Derrick Rose comments through me back at first, but the more I watched, the more it was clear that their styles of play are similar. Explosive, fearless at the rack, and just a will to push the Bulls to victory, it was all there. He had a chip on his shoulder that athletes always talk about as a driving force of motivation.

“I love guys that get opportunities and they take advantage of them, He was a handful. We couldn’t stay in front of him.” – Scott Brooks, Wizards Head Coach.

There are players like Lemon that can truly be a huge asset to an organization. It can remind the star players on a team just how fortunate they are to be at the top of their craft. He can be a symbol and reminder of all the hard work and dedication it took to be in the NBA. At the very least, you know he will give it his all to have the honor of playing for the Chicago Bulls. The future may be uncertain for Walt, but what I do know is that he has now put himself in a position to stay on an NBA roster and fulfill his lifelong dream. Something tells me this is not the last we will hear of him.